The blue wave that emerged on November 6 is looking a lot more like Hanukkah come early than Christmas, as it’s a wave that miraculously is still crashing more than eight days after the election. In the past few days, we have seen two more wins for JDCA-endorsed candidates – Kyrsten Sinema (AZ) and Katie Porter (CA) – in their races for the Senate and House. Of the 58 candidates JDCA endorsed, 89% won their elections. We are confident that the Jewish vote made the critical difference in support of Democrats, and are thrilled that 28 JDCA-endorsed candidates flipped seats from red to blue.
We could not have had this success without your support, and look forward to broadening the work of JDCA as we focus on advocacy in the 116th Congress. As we look to the future, JDCA will represent the voice and values of Jewish Democrats on Capitol Hill and beyond, and we look forward to continuing to partner with you to ensure your voices are heard. Consider supporting JDCA today to help us build on our achievements, and read on to learn more…
Analysis of the Jewish Vote in the Midterms
Analysis conducted this week by pollster Mark Mellman for JDCA found that 82% of the two-party Jewish vote for the House went to Democrats and 18% went to Republicans. This 64-point margin of support for Democrats among Jewish voters is the largest in over a decade, and one of the largest margins in history. It is also 57 points higher than the margin of support for Democrats among the American electorate generally.
As of October, 68% of Jewish voters identified as Democrats, which means that one in six Jewish voters supporting Democrats in midterms were Independents or Republicans. According to an election night poll conducted by GBA Strategies for J Street, 72% of Jewish voters believe Donald Trump’s rhetoric and policies are “very or at least somewhat” responsible for the horrific massacre at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. There is no question that Trump’s incendiary and divisive rhetoric emboldened hatred and anti-Semitism in our country, which is simply unacceptable. The Jewish community’s rejection of this administration has superseded politics, as we saw last week at the polls.
This election has reaffirmed what we have known for a long time: the Democratic Party is the natural home of American Jewry. Jewish values are Democratic values – socially-progressive and pro-Israel – and the Jewish vote was critical in helping Democrats win back control of Congress.
The 116th Congress will have at least 124 women, which breaks the previous record, and the overwhelming majority of them are Democrats. Of the newly-elected women in the House, only one is a Republican. The new House will have 28 Jewish members, the new Senate will have eight Jewish members, and all but two are Democrats. The new Congress will also include the first Native American woman, the first Muslim American women, and individual states have broken many records as well. We are thrilled the new Congress will more accurately represent the diversity of American society, and we know the Jewish vote was essential in shattering glass ceilings in this election.
Every Vote Must Count
In Florida, the outcome of the gubernatorial and Senate races remain unclear. Problems with antiquated voting machines have mired the recount, and recounts in Broward and Palm Beach Counties were disqualified because they did not meet a deadline. The Florida Senate race will now head into a manual hand-recount, and litigation continues surrounding the gubernatorial race. The situation in Florida as well as the Gubernatorial race in Georgia are stark reminders of the importance of securing and modernizing our election infrastructure, protecting voting rights and voter registration, fighting voter suppression, and ensuring that every vote is counted. These are critical issues that JDCA will continue to advocate for in the 116th Congress and beyond, especially as we approach the next election in 2020.
Join JDCA As We Plan For the Future
While we are thrilled with the outcome of the election, we know our work has just begun, and JDCA has many ways for you to remain involved. Democratic control of the House presents an opportunity to translate our values into legislative action. JDCA intends to serve as the voice of Jewish and Democratic values in the 116th Congress, and we want to hear from you as we establish our legislative policy agenda. Please email us at [email protected] with the top policy priorities you’d like to see JDCA focus on in the coming year.
JDCA is also planning on expanding as an organization in the coming year. We welcome your support at this pivotal time, so please consider ways you can help us as we grow. We are also seeking interns. If you are interested, or if you know someone who would be interested, please email [email protected].
Finally, as we approach Thanksgiving, we at JDCA hope that everyone takes time to recharge, re-energize, and refuel with family and friends. We are thankful for all of you and for your ongoing support, and we will be back on November 30.
Chair, Jewish Democratic Council of America